Hey Jude was the B-Side to the 1968 single Revolution by The Beatles. This single was the Beatles first release on the Apple label. Originally titled Hey Jules, the song was written by Paul McCartney in reference to John Lennon’s son Julian. One of my favorite online Beatles resources is Alan W. Pollack’s site, click here to read all the musical (and other) information you would ever want to know about Hey Jude.
Video from the Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise January 2009:
READ ON for more nine more covers of Hey Jude…
Ella Fitzgerald recorded this cover on her 1969 album Sunshine Of Your Love. Man, she was awesome.
Ella crushing it to a very unresponsive crowd at Montreux 1969:
The cover from Elvis Presley, available on Suspicious Minds: The Memphis 1969 Anthology, is a nice fit for The King’s voice but he takes some interesting liberties with the lyrics. Perhaps he could have benefited from the Hey Jude Flow Chart.
Most people know the Grateful Dead’s cover of Hey Jude as just the finale of the song as it was paired with Traffic’s Dear Mr. Fantasy between 1985-1990. But they also encored with a full performance of the song, twice in 1969, once at Fillmore East in NYC, once at Fillmore West in San Francisco. The audio below is from the latter and can be found on the release Fillmore West 1969: The Complete Recordings. It’s ummm, not very good.
There are actually three different reggae covers of Hey Jude on the Trojan Beatles Box Set. I’ve selected one, this cover courtesy of John Holt.
21,000,000+ YouTube views can’t be wrong. This cover uploaded by to YouTube by “kladblog”:
Video from the same show:
Similarly to the Trojan Box set above, there are also three different renditions of Hey Jude available on the various Dusty Fingers compilations. To keep the amount of covers under control, I have once again only selected one of them, this kick-ass instrumental rendition by The Overton Berry Trio. Source: Dusty Fingers: Volume One – Rare Original Break Beats
The Temptations make good use of their members vocal ranges on this cover recorded for their 1969 album Puzzle People.
And last but certainly not least, and I really mean that this week, is the definitive cover from Wilson Pickett. Just read the story about the recording over at raresoul.com. It’s a damn good thing Duane Allman was able to convince them to record it, that’s all I gotta say. Source: Hey Jude
If you want to kill even more time, I recommend reading the comments section of this YouTube of Wilson Pickett joined by The Bee Gees:
Checking in on last week’s Helplessly Hoping Cover Wars, Mr. Blotto has emerged victorious with Chelsea Williams coming in second.
Let’s have a look at some additional video before we go:
The Beatles – Smothers Brothers Show 1968:
Pretty cool moment in Trafalgar Square:
McCartney with a little help from Jack White and President Obama:
A 1997 performance with many special guests: